Review Category : Microsoft

Sony has announced two new laptops, the VAIO Pro and VAIO Duo.  Both include Intel’s fourth generation Haswell processor inside (up to Core i7), Triluminous color rendering and X-Reality display engine technologies, Rapid Wake feature to bring the systems back up to speed quickly after sleeping, and USB ports can charge a device when the notebooks are in sleep mode or even powered down. There AC adapter has a USB charging port, too.  These notebooks will connect to any NFC enabled device by simply tapping it to the VAIO to share data and connecting via Bluetooth. The VAIO Pro is available in 11 inch or 13 inch touchscreen, weighing 1.92 lbs or 2.34 lbs respectively.  The VAIO Pro 13 will offer a high-speed PCIe SSD drive.  Both VAIO Pro models can connect the optional sheet battery to double the battery life of either, giving an estimate 11 – 14 hours battery life.   The ...

Read More →

Microsoft is more focused on bringing more content to its upcoming gaming console Xbox One. They have already announced partnership with companies like ESPN, NFL, etc,. Along with live TV partnerships, Microsoft is also working on some exclusive content for Xbox through studios in Los Angeles, London, Seattle and Vancouver. Microsoft Entertainment Studios President Nancy Tellem told that they are producing content that merges “the story-telling magic of TV with the interactive power of the Xbox One.” Deadline reports that Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer recently visited Hollywood along with Nancy to strike exclusive content deals for Xbox. Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer was escorted by his entertainment studios president Nancy Tellem on the Hollywood visit late last week to lobby her former boss CBS chief Les Moonves, WME co-CEOS Ari Emanuel and Patrick Whitesell and other bigwigs in the TV business about the new Xbox One. It’s all part of their effort to ...

Read More →

A reorganization has been in the works at Microsoft for over two years now, as the plan is near being finalized new details are emerging.  The changes would give greater responsibility to executives including Satya Nadella, head of the (Azure) server business, Don Mattrick, who runs Xbox, Qi Lu, chief of the online group (Bing), and Tony Bates, president of Skype.  Andy Lees who was essentially fired from the Windows Phone division, will leave Microsoft sometime between the release of Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone Blue. Ballmer, who is now 57 is looking at potentially retiring after 10 years, and wants this reorganization to allow a natural successor to emerge within the company. Ballmer is still meeting with the board (i.e. Bill Gates) to discuss and finalize changes. The changes are aimed at cutting the number of disparate units and fostering cooperation between products so that Microsoft is more competitive. One idea ...

Read More →

You’ll be able to get your hands on the official Windows 8.1 Preview build in less than a month.  But in the mean time, our good friend Tom Warren has posted a video of the start button in action in build 9410. Of course the functionality could change, but nothing too dramatic really. Why do we need a Start Button again? via Tom Waren ...

Read More →

Microsoft has supported fingerprint readers and other biometric devices since the mid-90s through various third party software and drivers to log into Windows. With Windows 8.1 Microsoft hopes to improve this support more natively and will add the ability to lockdown down individual folders via fingerprint. For years Microsoft has been trying to make it easier to log into Windows in ways other than a password. The ‘picture password’ and ‘pin’ were added with Windows 8. With the Kinect coming to Windows within a year, facial recognition and retinal scans may soon be possible. In the mean time, Microsoft is working with OEMs to take biometrics more mainstream. According to the The Verge, “Swiping or touching a finger on a reader will allow Windows 8.1 to authenticate a finger against a Microsoft Account. Users will also be able to purchase applications using a fingerprint reader or login to apps.” Michael ...

Read More →

Dell today announced an updated XPS 12 convertible Ultrabook. The XPS 12 device now includes a NFC chip, latest Intel Haswell processor and a increased battery capacity to 50Wh. The XPS 12 can now last up to 9 hours! The device will go on sale for $1,200 from July 9th around the world. Enhanced Touch Experiences and Performance Boost New Dell XPS systems feature performance and expandability enhancements over the previous generation for customers that demand the latest high-performance technology. The new XPS 27 All-in-One PC delivers one of the world’s most vibrant touchscreen AIO experience with an incredibly vivid Adobe RGB Quad HD display. Now customers can design, create or enjoy multimedia with brighter, truer colors. For consumers seeking a versatile desktop with advanced performance, the XPS 8700 is built with speed, expandability and storage in mind. In addition, the award-winning XPS 12 convertible laptop is now designed to ...

Read More →

Innovation, Reinvention on Intel® Architecture Fuel Wave of 2-in-1 Devices, New Mobile Computing Experiences NEWS HIGHLIGHTS: Intel introduced 4th generation Intel® Core™ processors that serve as foundation to wave of new 2-in-1s that combine stunning PC performance with tablet-like mobility in one device and deliver on Ultrabook™ vision. New Intel Core processors deliver biggest power savings in company history, enabling over 9 hours of battery life1 with stunning performance and two times the graphics capability versus the previous generation2. Intel demonstrated for the first time its next-generation 22nm quad-core Intel® Atom™ SoC for tablets in conjunction with its forthcoming 4G LTE multimode data solution. Showed first smartphone reference design platform based on next-generation 22nm Intel Atom SoC for smartphones. COMPUTEX, Taipei, Taiwan, June 4, 2013 – Ushering in a wave of new Ultrabook™ andemerging 2-in-1 devices that deliver a PC when you need it and a tablet when you want ...

Read More →

Microsoft today launched new a program to help students and parents purchase a new Windows PC or Tablet for school. The new Windows Chip In website allows students with a valid .edu email address to crowd source funds to help them purchase a PC. They can choose from the Microsoft Store catalogue of devices with Microsoft Windows will “chip in” the first 10% of the cost of the PC via a discount to the overall cost. When a student fully funds the cost of a PC, Microsoft will also include  Office 365 University at no additional charge as well. How cool is that? As an icing on the cake, students wont have to pay shipping, handling or tax too.. Here’s how it works: Go to http://www.windowschipin.com/. Pick out the PC you’d like to help get funding for. Create an account. Ask friends and family to “chip In”. Fund and receive ...

Read More →

Microsoft to acquire Canadian provider of release management solutions, extending its DevOps solutions that utilize Microsoft Visual Studio and Team Foundation Server. Microsoft Corp. and InCycle Software Inc. today announced that Microsoft has reached an agreement to acquire the InRelease Business Unit from InCycle Software, a leading provider of application lifecycle management (ALM) services and Release Management solutions on the .NET platform. The acquisition of the continuous deployment solution, InRelease, will add Release Management capabilities to Microsoft’s ALM and DevOps solutions, helping customers deliver applications faster, better and more efficiently. “DevOps is an increasingly important part of ALM and a growing area of interest to chief information officers as businesses are pressured to develop and deploy quality applications at an increasingly faster pace,” said S. Somasegar, corporate vice president, Developer Division for Microsoft. “The InRelease continuous delivery solution will automate the development-to-production release process from Visual Studio Team Foundation Server, ...

Read More →

Microsoft has been churning out Windows 8.1 information lately.  While most of the consumer and developer information will come in June at the BUILD conference, Microsoft has just put online the Windows 8.1 landing page.  We likely see more official information regarding Win8.1 from Microsoft on this page. Check it out for yourself. Source: Microsoft ...

Read More →

Microsoft has made some nice improvements to Windows Azure, making it significantly cheaper for developers. Dev/Test in the Cloud: MSDN Use Rights, Unbeatable MSDN Discount Rates, MSDN Monetary Credits BizTalk Services: Great new service for Windows Azure that enables EDI and EAI integration in the cloud Per-Minute Billing and No Charge for Stopped VMs: Now only get charged for the exact minutes of compute you use, no compute charges for stopped VMs SSL Support with Web Sites: Support for both IP Address and SNI based SSL bindings on custom web-site domains Active Directory: Updated directory sync utility, ability to manage Office 365 directory tenants from Windows Azure Management Portal Free Trial: More flexible Free Trial offer A number of enhancements to Windows Azure to make a better environment in which to do dev/test: No Charge for Stopped VMs Pay by the Minute Billing MSDN Use Rights now supported on Windows Azure ...

Read More →

Skype team today released an update for Skype app for Windows 8 which brings in enhanced HD videos call support and improved video messaging experience. New Features: Enhanced HD Video Support We’ve added support for HD video in select scenarios. Depending on the sender’s camera, available network bandwidth and the receiver’s setup on x86 devices, callers may be able to send 720p video and receive 1080p video, thereby improving the overall quality and performance of the video call. Video Messaging continues in Preview We continue to improve video messaging and encourage you to try it. Video messaging enables you to share life moments with contacts whether they’re off or online. With this release we improved the stability of video messaging and made video messaging easier to find with improved notifications. Download it here from Windows Store for free. ...

Read More →

Microsoft has been talking about new features in Windows 8.1 at TechEd New Orleans 2013.  Some new features include NFC tap-to-pair printing – Tap your Windows 8.1 device against an enterprise NFC-enabled printer and you’re all set to print. No more hunting on your network for the correct printer and no need to buy a special printer; just attach a NFC tag to your existing machines. And you don’t need to buy new printers to take advantage of this; you can simply put an NFC tag on your existing printers to enable this functionality. Wi-Fi Direct printing – Connect to Wi-Fi Direct printers without adding additional drivers or software on your Windows 8.1 device, forming a peer-to-peer network between your device and the printer. Broadband tethering – Turn your Windows 8.1 mobile broadband-enabled PC or tablet into a personal Wi-Fi hotspot, allowing other devices to connect and access the internet. ...

Read More →

We previously reported Windows 8.1’s enterprise features, among these is native support for wireless format Miracast. This gives users an easy way to mirror their screens on supported devices.  Miracast was designed as an open alternative to Apple’s AirPlay.  This technology may also pop up in the Xbox.  An equivalent Airplay technology for Windows has been a much requested feature for quite some time, it’s looks like its finally here.     ...

Read More →

In last year’s Shareholder Letter, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer wrote Last year in this letter I said that over time, the full value of our software will be seen and felt in how people use devices and services at work and in their personal lives. This is a significant shift, both in what we do and how we see ourselves — as a devices and services company. It impacts how we run the company, how we develop new experiences, and how we take products to market for both consumers and businesses. The work we have accomplished in the past year and the roadmap in front of us brings this to life. I think we can all agree Microsoft certainly has moved to become more of a devices and services.  Products have been unified, brands have been solidified, and a faster, bolder company has emerged. Ballmer is now planning on a ...

Read More →

Bloomberg is reporting that Microsoft is planning on cutting the price of WinRT for small-sized (8 inch) tablets.  Microsoft originally restricted which OEMs would be allowed to produce WinRT tablets, but now Microsoft is looking to expand the number of OEMs producing WinRT tablets.  With more flexibility and cheaper WinRT software the OEMs will have a greater ability to compete against Android tablets and the iPad mini. It remains to be seen if the OEMs want to create a compelling WinRT tablet and will put the marketing muscle behind it to sell.  The SurfaceRT remains the most successful WinRT tablet, and an 8 inch version is expected to be unveiled later this month.  With Intel’s introduction of Haswell and a refreshed Atom processor, the problem of battery life is diminishing.  However, WinRT tablets will be cheaper and may be a compelling buy for consumers who do not need legacy software.   ...

Read More →